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Expert comment - Are declining employee absence levels good for businesses?

Andrew Weir, Employer Services Manager at Moorepay:

Company Profile

Moorepay

“On the surface of it, the fact that sick days are at an all-time low appears to be good news for British businesses.



But, there’s a danger it could be hiding a bigger problem – presenteeism – a staff member coming into work despite being ill because they feel they must.



We found that more than half of employees feel guilty about calling in sick even when they are genuinely ill - they don’t want to let down their colleagues, their managers or the organisation as a whole. And yet, a business environment whereby employees feel the need to come to work despite being unwell is detrimental to productivity, employee morale and business reputation.



Often the only way to address presenteeism is to have a real understanding of employee absence, not just having the raw data on the number of days off but taking time to understand better individual employees to ensure a healthy workplace with the right support as and when they need it.”